Despite the guidebook insisting today and yesterday were ‘easy’, pain is the name of the game right now. A stabbing pain in my blistered right little toe, and a soul consuming pain over the entire length of my footsoles.

The route itself varies from beautiful to downright nasty, with many overgrown paths leading nowhere and long stretches on white pebbles poking through your soles (leading to the aforementioned soul consuming pain). To cover roughly 65 kilometer in two days in these circumstances is not quite pleasant.

Hiking along the Isar Canal
Beating the heat along the Isar Canal.

Luckily, I’m not alone in my suffering. Joining me is Anthony who has a bum knee and Elena from Munich, who has bad blisters. As we were hiking down the mainstreet of the town of Bad Tölz together I noticed we were all having our own unique limp. Strangely, to suffer together is one of the nicest parts of thru-hiking. I guess it is type two fun, where the fun is somehow enhanced by suffering.

Enough about the suffering, how about the trail? So far we’ve gone upstream along the Isar river, which has people floating downstream on all kinds of boats and rafts and is littered with pretty beaches inviting you for a swim. Occasionally we served as a meal delivery service for the vast amount of stinging flies and musquitos along the route. The Alps, so far away when we started out, are getting closer now. Tomorrow we’ll follow the river for twelve more kilometers before we get up close and personal with the mountains. I’m looking forward to it: less kilometers and more views. Let the fun begin!

Isar river inviting us for a swim
Isar river inviting us for a swim

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